By Samuel Opio
All the latest news as the Premier League clubs frantically look for upgrades for the second half of the season
Mario Balotelli ‘set for shock switch to Juventus’ as former Liverpool striker prepares to leave Nice
Mario Balotelli is reportedly set for a shock switch to Juventus as the former Liverpool striker prepares for another crack at the big time.
The Italian has had a chequered career taking in spells at Manchester City, Anfield, AC and Inter Milan and now Nice.
He has been in impressive form this term, netting 12 times in 16 Ligue 1 outings, and that has caught the eye of Juve.
Balotelli is out of contract in the summer and Juve are apparently lining him up on a free transfer, as well as Liverpool midfielder Emre Can.
Manchester United No.7’s rated and slated as Alexis Sanchez prepares to take legendary Red Devils number
Alexis Sanchez will wear the legendary No.7 shirt at Manchester United after a leaked image emerged ahead of his swap deal from Arsenal with Henrikh Mkhitaryan heading in the opposite direction.
The Chilean’s arrival will boost Jose Mourinho’s hopes of making up ground on Manchester City in the title race and enhance their chances of a deep run in the Champions League.
Mourinho now possesses a formidable strike force with Sanchez set to link up with Romelu Lukaku, Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford.
United fans could see Sanchez make his debut on Friday in the FA Cup fourth round vs Yeovil provided Mkhitaryan’s move to north London avoids any hiccups.
Lennon set for Burnley medical
Aaron Lennon is still waiting to undergo his medical at Burnley to complete his switch from Everton.
The clubs have agreed a nominal fee for Lennon and the former England and Tottenham winger has agreed personal terms with the Clarets.
However, he did not have his medical over the weekend and Burnley are still waiting to tie up the 30-year-old’s permanent transfer.
Burnley have plenty of time and their next game is not until Wednesday next week when they face Newcastle at St James’ Park.
RVP unveiled by Feyenoord
Robin van Persie has been unveiled as a Feyenoord player – 13 years after leaving the Dutch giants.
He will wear the No.32 shirt.
Van Persie made his Feyenoord debut back in 2002 but will pull on the famous shirt once again.
Arsenal chief executive Ivan Gazidis and club officials remain in Germany in hope of securing a deal for Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang.
Gazidis is in talks with Borussia Dortmund over a January move for the Gabon international.
Dortmund had revealed last week that an enquiry for the player had been made by the Gunners, but did not confirm that an official bid had been lodged.
Sky sources understand the situation remains the same and a deal is yet to be reached between the two clubs.
Aubameyang has made clear his desire to leave Dortmund in recent weeks, and was recently dropped by the Bundesliga side for a match against Hertha Berlin due to a lack of focus.
Commenting on the situation via the club’s official Twitter account, sporting director Michael Zorc said: “We have the impression at the moment that he [Aubameyang] has his head on other things and is not fully focused.”
Chelsea close to Emerson Palmieri signing as Edin Dzeko deal drags on
Chelsea appear close to completing the signing of left-back Emerson Palmieri from Roma – but a deal for Edin Dzeko remains some distance away.
Sources in Italy report that Palmieri’s representatives are happy with terms for the 23-year-old to move to Stamford Bridge and are just waiting for the clubs to give the nod.
They also report that Dzeko’s agent is expected in London in the next 24 hours and Chelsea have improved their offer for the player.
Roma are asking for £44m plus £8.8m in bonus payments for the pair, and the clubs are now trying to work out whether to include Chelsea’s Michy Batshuayi on loan in the deal.
But one source has told TheSpy Uganda that Dzeko is proving more difficult because of his wages, and Chelsea are unsure whether to spend too much on a 31-year-old, taking the whole financial package into account.
The source has also claimed that Chelsea’s preference is another West Ham player – Marko Arnautovic
Manchester City eye £40m January move for Shakhtar’s Fred – sources
Manchester City are considering a January move for Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder Fred in a bid to get a head start on their summer transfer business, sources have told TheSpy Uganda.
The Brazilian is the club’s top target for the holding midfield role after being watched by City scouts and impressing manager Pep Guardiola when the two sides met in the Champions League.
Fred, 24, is wanted to provide competition for Fernandinho, who last week signed a two-year contract extension, for next season. City’s current alternative, Yaya Toure, is likely to leave the club at the end of the season when his current contract expires.